Close call. Administration nearly deports home school family

posted at 11:21 am on March 5, 2014 by Jazz Shaw

A few news outlets picked up on a story which nearly turned out very badly for one family who came to America seeking a particular type of freedom. Uwe and Hannelore Romeike brought their six offspring to the United States because they wanted the choice to home school their children, a decision which could have cost them dearly back home. But after initially being granted asylum, the system seemed prepared to send them back.

Uwe and Hannelore Romeike came to the United States in 2008 seeking political asylum. They fled their German homeland in the face of religious persecution for homeschooling their children.

They wanted to live in a country where they could raise their children in accordance with their Christian beliefs.

The Romeikes were initially given asylum, but the Obama administration objected – claiming that German laws that outlaw homeschooling do not constitute persecution.

On Monday, the Supreme Court declined to hear the Romeike’s appeal – paving the way for the Christian family of eight to be deported.

Up until now, I had never heard about the Germans banning home schooling, to say nothing of the threat of having children removed from the home if they were not enrolled in the public education system. Apparently, though, this is a real problem which many families are dealing with. Unfortunately, it seems that the threat of having your seized by the state doesn’t constitute persecution in some corners of the country and it seemed as if the Romeike family would be sent back to Germany to face their fate.

But, as Deroy Murdock reports at The Corner, there was a last minute glimmer of hope.

The Romeikes can stay in America.

Just yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal by this German family of home schoolers. They had been fighting the U.S. Justice Department, which labored to revoke their political asylum status and send them back to Germany, where home schooling is illegal. Talk of the Romeikes’ imminent deportation cast a pall over Americans who cherish individual liberty and human rights.

Just a day later, according to Michael Farris of the Home School Legal Defense Association, the Romeikes’ attorneys, “a supervisor with the Department of Homeland Security called a member of our legal team to inform us that the Romeike family has been granted ‘indefinite deferred status.’”

“This means that the Romeikes can stay in the United States permanently (unless they are convicted of a crime, etc.),” Farris said.

While there are many internal battles going on – and with good reason – I think we tend to forget sometimes just how many freedoms we enjoy in the United States, even when some of them are under attack. In many areas of the country, parents still have the choice as to how to educate their children. Of course, that doesn’t mean we should take them for granted. Even now, the new Mayor of New York City has taken it upon himself to essentially declare war on school choice, sending many of the city’s most promising students from economically disadvantaged areas back to the failing school systems they struggled to escape.

Welcome to America, Romeike family. Here’s to hoping it remains worth the trip.


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Now all Holder needs to do is trump up a crime. And in this age in which law and regulation are Byzantine and isn’t understood even by the people who MAKE THE LAWS, and ignorance is not a defense, every one of us probably unknowingly commit a half dozen felonies a day.

ConstantineXI on March 5, 2014 at 11:23 AM

“Arians”

Schadenfreude on March 5, 2014 at 11:24 AM

Aryans

Schadenfreude on March 5, 2014 at 11:24 AM

Suppose they’ll vote D now (that the oaf in chief showed mercy)?

Schadenfreude on March 5, 2014 at 11:25 AM

Live underground like 12 million other illegals in the shadows…

Oh wait their white… They must be punished…

Kuffar on March 5, 2014 at 11:27 AM

They wanted to live in a country where they could raise their children in accordance with their Christian beliefs.
 
The Romeikes were initially given asylum, but the Obama administration objected…

 

They had been fighting the U.S. Justice Department

 
President Obama in yesterday’s “racist” “tyrant” thread:
 

I am concerned about the folks who I spoke to today who are working really hard, are trying to figure out how they can send their kids to college, are trying to make sure that they can save for their retirement. And if I can take steps on their behalf, then I’m going to do so. And I would hope that more and more of Congress will say, you know what, since that’s our primary focus, we’re willing to work with you to advance those ideals. But I’m not just going to sit back if the only message from some of these folks is no on everything, and sit around and twiddle my thumbs for the next 1,200 days.

rogerb on March 5, 2014 at 11:29 AM

They’re on “indefinite deferral” because officially, their case is still under review. They’ll be deported after this all goes away in the press.

gryphon202 on March 5, 2014 at 11:29 AM

Now all Holder needs to do is trump up a crime. And in this age in which law and regulation are Byzantine and isn’t understood even by the people who MAKE THE LAWS, and ignorance is not a defense, every one of us probably unknowingly commit a half dozen felonies a day.

ConstantineXI on March 5, 2014 at 11:23 AM

The IRS is on it. Arithmetic errors are proof of intent to commit fraud.

rbj on March 5, 2014 at 11:30 AM

They should have just walked across the border. Less problems.

LaughterJones on March 5, 2014 at 11:30 AM

Jazz, if you haven’t heard of this case before now, you haven’t been paying attention. Glenn Beck has been hammering this story for more than a year.

Germany is enforcing a law passed by the Nazis that banned home schooling because Hitler wanted complete control of the youth.
Sound familiar, cough, cough, Common Core…..

Curmudgeon on March 5, 2014 at 11:31 AM

We live in a place where Mexican drug dealers are given immunity and an all expenses paid week in the US to testify against border patrol agents for doing their job, and where a family who legally enters the country so they can home school their children are denied a hearing by the Supreme Court and now must do the impossible….live here without violating a single law.

I want a seat on the first Starship outa here.

BobMbx on March 5, 2014 at 11:32 AM

They should change their last name to Grijalva and all their ‘immigrant status’ problems with just go away.

Missilengr on March 5, 2014 at 11:35 AM

They should have just claimed to be leftists.

Schadenfreude on March 5, 2014 at 11:35 AM

Home School Legal Defense Association is the real hero of this story. Farris and his crew run a tight ship. They know the right buttons to push and the right battles to fight. HSLDA should be a model for conservative activism everywhere. I had the honor of interviewing Chris Klicka of HSLDA once when Puerto Rico tried to clamp down on homeschooling freedom. He helped our local homeschool groups draft a strong defense to our legislature. The bill died in committee. He went to be with the Lord only months later.

JoseQuinones on March 5, 2014 at 11:35 AM

Romeikes

They should have said they were the Ramirez family, they would have gotten anything they wanted including seats next to Mooch at the next SOTU.

Bishop on March 5, 2014 at 11:36 AM

The threats against homeschooling in Germany is so bad right now that parents are denied the right to take their children out of the country if it is believed the parents will ultimately homeschool their children abroad.

http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/judge-denies-homeschoolers-custody-of-their-four-children-so-they-cant-flee

NotCoach on March 5, 2014 at 11:38 AM

Home School Legal Defense Association is the real hero of this story. Farris and his crew run a tight ship. They know the right buttons to push and the right battles to fight. HSLDA should be a model for conservative activism everywhere. I had the honor of interviewing Chris Klicka of HSLDA once when Puerto Rico tried to clamp down on homeschooling freedom. He helped our local homeschool groups draft a strong defense to our legislature. The bill died in committee. He went to be with the Lord only months later.

JoseQuinones on March 5, 2014 at 11:35 AM

They don’t have the manpower to help everyone screwed by FedGov. For ever Romeike family, there are hundreds thousands of others who we’ll never hear about.

gryphon202 on March 5, 2014 at 11:39 AM

A “few” news outlets picked up on a story which nearly turned out very badly for one family who came to America seeking a particular type of freedom

…the administration is working on that!….need moderators in the news-rooms!

KOOLAID2 on March 5, 2014 at 11:42 AM

Holder’s DOJ has no problem evicting them from the country. On the other hand, Obama’s relatives get to ‘over-stay’ their visas and remain here, getting pubic assistance.

I’m betting Holder and Obama would have no problem with ‘re-education camps’ for conservatives.

It’s all in the penumbras and emanations of liberal “nuance”.

GarandFan on March 5, 2014 at 11:46 AM

Did DHS come up with the status in order to save face for Holder and/or preezy? Are they here under the questionably legal DREAM Act?

That said, I’m very pleased they are here for now. I believe the notion of mandatory govt education is anathema. How is that different from indoctrination/reeducation camp? Glad my kids don’t get indoctrinated.

freedomfirst on March 5, 2014 at 11:48 AM

As a homeschooling parent I have been following this story for quite some time. While I am happy with the latest news, I will not be relieved until this “verbal” assurance advances to something actually written down. Holder and company can easily come in and change this just because… and therefore I need to see it in writing. “Full faith and credit” no longer matters in America today, and that in and of itself is a very sad thing.

TheLoudTalker on March 5, 2014 at 11:51 AM

The threats against homeschooling in Germany is so bad right now that parents are denied the right to take their children out of the country if it is believed the parents will ultimately homeschool their children abroad.

http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/judge-denies-homeschoolers-custody-of-their-four-children-so-they-cant-flee

NotCoach on March 5, 2014 at 11:38 AM

No wonder all the German school uniforms are brown.

Bishop on March 5, 2014 at 11:51 AM

“indefinite deferred status” = “We’re waiting until this mess fades into the background to deport this white Christian homeschooling family.”

novaculus on March 5, 2014 at 11:52 AM

Up until now, I had never heard about the Germans banning home schooling

This story has been in the news for something like two years, Jazz. And you just now noticed the ban in Germany?

GWB on March 5, 2014 at 11:53 AM

Germany – a country where you can sell your body but you can’t home school your own children .

EnglishRogue on March 5, 2014 at 11:56 AM

This story has been in the news for something like two years, Jazz. And you just now noticed the ban in Germany?

GWB on March 5, 2014 at 11:53 AM

Three words for y’all:

Behind. The. Curve.

gryphon202 on March 5, 2014 at 11:58 AM

The Romeikes were initially given asylum, but the Obama administration objected – claiming that German laws that outlaw homeschooling do not constitute persecution.

And what persecution do Mexican tomato pickers face that warrants there allowance to stay here — illegally?

Bitter Clinger on March 5, 2014 at 12:01 PM

Hell, in California if you are an illegal they won’t even confiscate your car. They won’t even give you a speeding…you just give them a false name!

They need to learn to speak Spanish.

Oil Can on March 5, 2014 at 12:02 PM

I’m betting Holder and Obama would have no problem with ‘re-education camps’ for conservatives.

GarandFan on March 5, 2014 at 11:46 AM

But that means you would have to listen to my yammering all the time as my Liberal friend would throw me in with you as punishment to you!

HonestLib on March 5, 2014 at 12:09 PM

I was reading a German page last week referring to the group of religious homeschoolers in Germany. The Germans feel that the groups ideas of education are delivering no education at all, except religion. Stories have two sides usually.

BL@KBIRD on March 5, 2014 at 12:10 PM

A homeschooling missionary couple I know was working in Germany in the mid-nineties, and they had to put their kids into public school (conducted in English).

This is the Prussian model by the way. It may have been endorsed by the National Socialists, but we can thank Bismarck for it.

Akzed on March 5, 2014 at 12:12 PM

obama played god, again.

Schadenfreude on March 5, 2014 at 12:14 PM

Banning homeschooling is bad, but I don’t think it merits a claim of asylum in the US. They can travel to and live in any EU country if they want. I wish we could just enforce our laws. Exceptions for favored groups (theirs or ours) undermines the rule of law.

Ted Torgerson on March 5, 2014 at 12:14 PM

I was reading a German page last week referring to the group of religious homeschoolers in Germany. The Germans feel that the groups ideas of education are delivering no education at all, except religion. Stories have two sides usually. BL@KBIRD on March 5, 2014 at 12:10 PM

Not to concede to your anecdote, but what business is that of the state’s?

Akzed on March 5, 2014 at 12:16 PM

Is it true that Common Core is also intended to kill off Home Schooling?

slickwillie2001 on March 5, 2014 at 12:16 PM

Up until now, I had never heard about the Germans banning home schooling, to say nothing of the threat of having children removed from the home if they were not enrolled in the public education system. Apparently, though, this is a real problem which many families are dealing with. 

Ed covered this a couple of times on hotgas as did MM on her site.

AH_C on March 5, 2014 at 12:16 PM

But that means you would have to listen to my yammering all the time as my Liberal friend would throw me in with you as punishment to you!

HonestLib on March 5, 2014 at 12:09 PM

we could do worse :)

dmacleo on March 5, 2014 at 12:17 PM

Don’t miss this: http://www.christianpost.com/news/german-homeschoolers-romeike-family-will-not-be-deported-dhs-says-115599/

The Romeikes were initially granted asylum in the United States after they were threatened with jail time and losing custody of their children for choosing to homeschool. The Obama administration, though, appealed that decision and won, arguing that there is no fundamental right to determine the education of one’s children.

I beg to differ, of course. But I’m not surprised they think so.

There Goes the Neighborhood on March 5, 2014 at 12:20 PM

I wondered how they were going to deport anyways. Mom had a baby after coming here. Doesn’t that baby get to be considered an “anchor” baby or do liberal only allow that when they are assured a certain segment of the population will vote for them.

melle1228 on March 5, 2014 at 12:32 PM

They followed the laws and were nearly deported, but those who openly defied the law are nearly canonized! The law breakers are referred to as dreamers.

Our system is badly broken.

Our system is seriously corrupt.

petunia on March 5, 2014 at 12:34 PM

homeschool. The Obama administration, though, appealed that decision and won, arguing that there is no fundamental right to determine the education of one’s children.

I beg to differ, of course. But I’m not surprised they think so.

There Goes the Neighborhood on March 5, 2014 at 12:20 PM

You have the right to kill them in utro, but not educate them.

petunia on March 5, 2014 at 12:35 PM

there is no fundamental right to determine the education of one’s children.

I beg to differ, of course. But I’m not surprised they think so.

There Goes the Neighborhood on March 5, 2014 at 12:20 PM

That is absolutely ridiculous, and has no Constitutional merit or precedent. The Courts have ruled against this line of thinking time and time again.

Farrington v. Tokushige, Pierce v. Society of Sisters– Not to mention the numerous cases that say that a parent has the right to parent their child free from state interference.

melle1228 on March 5, 2014 at 12:37 PM

This sets a bed precedent – any one in countries where home schooling is banned can now apply for asylum in the US. With the high rate of fraud that is prevalent in asylum cases – this further lowers the bar for admission for asylum.

jdivito on March 5, 2014 at 12:39 PM

Can you even imagine 30%+ of the CA prison population being Germans?!

Akzed on March 5, 2014 at 12:39 PM

This sets a bed precedent – any one in countries where home schooling is banned can now apply for asylum in the US. With the high rate of fraud that is prevalent in asylum cases – this further lowers the bar for admission for asylum. jdivito on March 5, 2014 at 12:39 PM

Yeah well that’s really something to worry about if you needed something.

Akzed on March 5, 2014 at 12:42 PM

This sets a bed precedent – any one in countries where home schooling is banned can now apply for asylum in the US. With the high rate of fraud that is prevalent in asylum cases – this further lowers the bar for admission for asylum.

jdivito on March 5, 2014 at 12:39 PM

I’d say that in this instance, it was a pretty clear-cut case. And besides, how about the rampant fraud and abuse that is encouraged when it comes to Mexicans? Can we worry about that first?

gryphon202 on March 5, 2014 at 12:43 PM

Not to concede to your anecdote, but what business is that of the state’s?

Akzed on March 5, 2014 at 12:16 PM

Apparently these religious families are not out for reading, writing, critical thinking or anything that matches state standards of education. I’m not taking the states side, just putting another angle on it.

BL@KBIRD on March 5, 2014 at 12:43 PM

This sets a bed precedent – any one in countries where home schooling is banned can now apply for asylum in the US. With the high rate of fraud that is prevalent in asylum cases – this further lowers the bar for admission for asylum.

jdivito on March 5, 2014 at 12:39 PM

Educating and parenting your child free from state interference is fundamental right guaranteed by the Constitution. Why is this any less oppressive than a government coming down on someone for speech?

melle1228 on March 5, 2014 at 12:44 PM

Is it true that Common Core is also intended to kill off Home Schooling?

slickwillie2001 on March 5, 2014 at 12:16 PM

Specifically? Not sure and Del has a better answer. But, I will say that in general Liberals dislike home schooling and vouchers for many reason. To be open……we home school our kids after 6th grade as (1) our older kids problems all began in middle school (2) our kids practice tennis (their choice) 6 to 8 hours a day and home schooling was a good and cheaper option (3) in the summer we can extend every weekend by a day to play at our second home.

The first thought that my Liberal friends have when I tell them we home school is this….”did not know you were a religious nut”. To Liberals home schooling is only about religion and they are comfortable enough with me to tell the truth.

HonestLib on March 5, 2014 at 12:45 PM

The first thought that my Liberal friends have when I tell them we home school is this….”did not know you were a religious nut”. To Liberals home schooling is only about religion and they are comfortable enough with me to tell the truth.

HonestLib on March 5, 2014 at 12:45 PM

Liberals just think you are a religious nut who is indoctrinating you children INSTEAD of letting a stranger indoctrinate them in a classroom. In the classroom, the indoctrination is guaranteed to be liberal. They can’t control what you are teaching your children.

melle1228 on March 5, 2014 at 12:47 PM

Up until now, I had never heard about the Germans banning home schooling, to say nothing of the threat of having children removed from the home if they were not enrolled in the public education system. Apparently, though, this is a real problem which many families are dealing with.

Jazz Shaw on March 5, 2014 at 11:21 am

.
http://www.wnd.com/2013/09/homeschoolers-asked-to-rally-for-stolen-children/

Being a conscientious Christian believer in Germany is apparently against the law, now.

listens2glenn on March 5, 2014 at 12:57 PM

I’m betting Holder and Obama would have no problem with ‘re-education camps’ for conservatives.

GarandFan on March 5, 2014 at 11:46 AM

Are you aware that Obama buddy and ghost writer Bill Ayers and the Weather Underground terrorists planned to do exactly that after the revolution? They expected to imprison millions in concentration camps, and to murder thousands of incorrigibles.

novaculus on March 5, 2014 at 1:06 PM

Precedent set: path to legalization of 12 million undocumented people will be through home schooling…………….

Bradky on March 5, 2014 at 1:08 PM

The first thought that my Liberal friends have when I tell them we home school is this….”did not know you were a religious nut”. To Liberals home schooling is only about religion and they are comfortable enough with me to tell the truth.

HonestLib on March 5, 2014 at 12:45 PM

The reason its all about religion is because that is what the schools and teachers unions have been spouting for decades. They’ve really worked overtime to deny that the public school system is fundamentally flawed, and so have attempted to destroy alternatives. The attack has several prongs: 1) legal–the unions and educrats are pushing for stricter regulations on homeschooling; 2) curricula–unions and educrats have gone on the offensive in attempting to de-legitimize many effective curriculum strategies, like Saxon Math. Now, parents seeking to homeschool need to work EXTRA hard to find curricula they like; 3) court of public opinion–unions and educrats have attempted to paint homeschooling parents as religious nuts, and have spread the lie that homeschooling creates socially awkward kids.

mrteachersir on March 5, 2014 at 1:14 PM

I don’t hate people who support govt schools. Why do they hate people who homeschool? It’s not the money (yet). It must be the ideology. They want to “train” future voters into thinking “correctly”.

I chose the red pill.

freedomfirst on March 5, 2014 at 1:16 PM

The first thought that my Liberal friends have when I tell them we home school is this….”did not know you were a religious nut”. To Liberals home schooling is only about religion and they are comfortable enough with me to tell the truth.

HonestLib on March 5, 2014 at 12:45 PM

Here is how to respond to liberals: When did you learn to embrace Marxism?

HiJack on March 5, 2014 at 1:20 PM

They can travel to and live in any EU country if they want.

Maybe the Romeike family can but not the Wunderlich family:

In a shocking verdict regarding a homeschool case in Germany, a family court judge has refused to return legal custody of four children to Christian parents to prevent the family from obtaining visas that would allow them to travel to a country where homeschooling is permitted.

Vera71 on March 5, 2014 at 1:20 PM

Despite cynics of homeschooling, results apparently argue in favor of the practice. By various measures, homeschoolers rate 20-30 percentile points better than their govt-schooled buddies.

Created by: CollegeAtHome.com

Created by: home-school-statistics

freedomfirst on March 5, 2014 at 1:34 PM

Obama wants to get rid of Christians here and welcome in illegal aliens and evil immans from sryia. It’s a sad state we are in now.

sadsushi on March 5, 2014 at 1:38 PM

Not to concede to your anecdote, but what business is that of the state’s?

Akzed on March 5, 2014 at 12:16 PM

Apparently these religious families are not out for reading, writing, critical thinking or anything that matches state standards of education. I’m not taking the states side, just putting another angle on it.

BL@KBIRD on March 5, 2014 at 12:43 PM

That is a concern that has been voiced in the United States, as well. Many states have home-schooling laws that require the “administrators” (parents, but you have to be PC) of home-schooling programs to submit their curricula to the school superintendents, in addition to submitting to the standardized test regulations.

mrteachersir on March 5, 2014 at 1:40 PM

Apparently these religious families are not out for reading, writing, critical thinking…

BL@KBIRD on March 5, 2014 at 12:43 PM

How does that differ from American public education?

mabryb1 on March 5, 2014 at 1:54 PM

Jazz, you need to get out more. Keep up with Todd Starnes at FOX who frequently writes on what is going on with Christians in this country.

“This is an incredible victory that I can only credit to Almighty God. I also want to thank those who spoke up on this issue—including that long ago White House petition,” said Michael Farris, chairman of the Home School Legal Defense Association. “We believe that the public outcry made a huge impact. What an amazing turnaround—in just 24 hours.”

…In recent days, evangelical Christians around the nation have expressed outrage at the Obama administration’s assault on the family. Lawmakers and clergy alike had said anything short of asylum could lead to civil disobedience.

“It may require civil disobedience with this bunch,” said Rep. Phil Roe (R-Tenn.), who represents the east Tennessee congressional district where the Romeike family lives….

Roe called Attorney General Eric Holder “one of the most dangerous people in the country” and called his department’s assault on the Romeike family “appalling and worrisome.”

“I don’t see this as a Democrat or Republican issue,” he said. “It’s an issue of religious freedom. By golly, if we don’t stand for what, what do we stand for?”

Michael Farris, the chairman of the Home School Legal Defense Association, is representing the family.

Farris predicted that if the Romeikes had been deported, it would have sparked a movement among religious liberty supporters.

INC on March 5, 2014 at 2:03 PM

If you think Farris’ words are an exaggeration, then you don’t know homeschoolers or the history of the homeschool movement.

Homeschoolers are probably the most massive, battle-hardened, well-organized grassroots group in the country with a long history of fighting for their children.

H.R. 6 is a memorable case in point.

https://www.hslda.org/about/history/battle_hr6.asp

http://www.hslda.org/about/history/lessons_hr6.asp

INC on March 5, 2014 at 2:16 PM

Banning homeschooling is bad, but I don’t think it merits a claim of asylum in the US. They can travel to and live in any EU country if they want. I wish we could just enforce our laws. Exceptions for favored groups (theirs or ours) undermines the rule of law.

Ted Torgerson on March 5, 2014 at 12:14 PM

I don’t think this is about homeschooling per se; it’s about the lack of religious freedom in Germany. The Romeike family should be allowed follow their personal religious beliefs and educate their family accordingly. Framed in that way, it is a religious freedom issue and people get asylum for that ALL THE TIME.

ImmigrantsWife on March 5, 2014 at 2:33 PM

Apparently these religious families are not out for reading, writing, critical thinking or anything that matches state standards of education. I’m not taking the states side, just putting another angle on it.

BL@KBIRD on March 5, 2014 at 12:43 PM

Wow. I’m not sure where to go with this. Do you really believe this or are you just trolling? I’m willing to give you the benefit of the doubt.

First let me tell you that homeschool regulation differs by state, as it is and should remain a state’s responsibility. What happens in OH is far different than what happens in PA or IN. Regulations can include standardized testing, evaluations by an accredited evaluator, submission of a portfolio to the school superintendent, etc.

Also, many, many homeschool families pull their kids form mainstream school for religious reasons. These kids are sharp, mature, and very well-socialized. These kids excel in science fairs, spelling bees, geography bees, and math, among other areas. Their standardized test scores are largely higher than their public school counterparts. As far as critical thinking goes, many are on debate teams that compete at several levels, including national.

Finally, I leave you with Tim Hawkins, extolling the eccencentricities of the homeschool family.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VM6uqj0_jQc

ImmigrantsWife on March 5, 2014 at 2:45 PM

Germany is enforcing a law passed by the Nazis that banned home schooling because Hitler wanted complete control of the youth.
Sound familiar, cough, cough, Common Core…..

Curmudgeon on March 5, 2014 at 11:31 AM

BINGO!!!!!

Gunlock Bill on March 5, 2014 at 2:50 PM

The real question about all this is why, after all this hassle, when the SCOTUS denied hearing the case, did the Obama admin now decide to let them stay? I don’t trust them, not for a minute.

ImmigrantsWife on March 5, 2014 at 2:50 PM

The real question about all this is why, after all this hassle, when the SCOTUS denied hearing the case, did the Obama admin now decide to let them stay? I don’t trust them, not for a minute.

ImmigrantsWife on March 5, 2014 at 2:50 PM

They are all going to be rounded up soon enough anyways.

Long klieg and concertina.

Murphy9 on March 5, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Eccentricities – need an edit option

ImmigrantsWife on March 5, 2014 at 3:48 PM

The real question about all this is why, after all this hassle, when the SCOTUS denied hearing the case, did the Obama admin now decide to let them stay? I don’t trust them, not for a minute.

ImmigrantsWife on March 5, 2014 at 2:50 PM

Maybe because they got the precedent they wanted: a ruling that parents do not have a fundamental right to say how their children are educated.

We already know they think the children belong to the state.

There Goes the Neighborhood on March 5, 2014 at 4:05 PM

Why did Obama change his mind?

Political polls & public pressure persuaded persecuting president to punt.

itsnotaboutme on March 5, 2014 at 4:07 PM

Not to concede to your anecdote, but what business is that of the state’s?

Akzed on March 5, 2014 at 12:16 PM

Apparently these religious families are not out for reading, writing, critical thinking or anything that matches state standards of education. I’m not taking the states side, just putting another angle on it.

BL@KBIRD on March 5, 2014 at 12:43 PM

How likely is it that parents don’t care about whether their children can read and write?

This is about control. Germany wants to control the education of all children, so they outlaw educating your children any other way. The actual result of the education — how well the children are educated — is irrelevant.

There Goes the Neighborhood on March 5, 2014 at 4:09 PM

Apparently these religious families are not out for reading, writing, critical thinking or anything that matches state standards of education. I’m not taking the states side, just putting another angle on it.

BL@KBIRD on March 5, 2014 at 12:43 PM

Before the Romeikes fled Germany the German courts admitted that the kids were excelling academically. The same is true of several other German homeschool families the German courts have threatened.

The courts themselves never claimed homeschooling was banned or bad due to poor academics. They have always said it’s banned because they don’t want “parallel societies” developing in Germany.

I don’t know where you’re getting your “facts,” but neither side of this story is making the claims you are.

frost on March 5, 2014 at 4:15 PM

German homeschoolers face a situation not unlike the situation American homeschoolers faced 25-30 years ago. However, Germans face this battle in a culture that does not place a high value, in its official documents or official action, on religious or educational freedom. That is why German homeschoolers need our help.

Second to last paragraph on this page. There is much information about this topic at that link.

Full disclosure, I live in Germany and do have a child in public school. No, I have not seen any children in my area wear uniforms to school (unless jeans and t-shirts qualify). It is different here than in the US, with different school ‘forms’ and a mandatory attendance law.

pillepalle on March 5, 2014 at 4:47 PM

Banning homeschooling is bad, but I don’t think it merits a claim of asylum in the US. They can travel to and live in any EU country if they want. I wish we could just enforce our laws. Exceptions for favored groups (theirs or ours) undermines the rule of law.

Ted Torgerson on March 5, 2014 at 12:14 PM

I don’t understand your opinion.

I agree that banning home schooling is bad. The reason any power wants to control education is so that it can define what is and is not true; one resists that power because one believes the power is mistaken or lying. Either the things the power is declaring are false, or they are incomplete, or the context of its declarations is such that understanding becomes warped.

For religious people living in an atheistic society, handing their children’s minds over to be shaped by strangers whose basic suppositions about life are wrong would pose a particular problem. For the religious family, everything is defined in relation to God; for the society within which they live (and its public schools), notions of God are, at best, unrelated to anything other than the actions they cause religious people to take. The same problem would exist for an atheistic family living within a religious society.

I think it’s problematic to try to see the situation of religious parents as something other than a “religious freedom” issue, any issue somehow divorced from religion. By banning such parents from teaching their own children, the government is declaring that, where the substance of what would be taught would differ, the parents would be wrong. That’s not neutral in any way — that’s making a clear statement that the beliefs of the parents are wrong and should not be taught. That’s oppression — and we grant asylum to people seeking religious freedom when that freedom is compatible with our own morality, being a nation founded by people seeking religious freedom.

Of course, allowing parents to teach children what they believe is fraught . . .

I don’t understand what you meant with respect to “favored groups.”

Axe on March 5, 2014 at 10:47 PM

Axe on March 5, 2014 at 10:47 PM

Probably the foundational belief of homeschoolers is that parents are to be the ones directing the education of their children.

INC on March 6, 2014 at 4:27 AM

Maybe because they got the precedent they wanted: a ruling that parents do not have a fundamental right to say how their children are educated.

We already know they think the children belong to the state.

There Goes the Neighborhood on March 5, 2014 at 4:05 PM

I haven’t read the court docs, but I doubt any ruling was that broad, and if it was they would have had a fight on their hands. Read the history of H.R. 6 I linked to above.

That’s not to say this administration doesn’t have that in its sights, because it does, but it is clueless as to the composition and fiber of homeschoolers. While I’d guess most are conservative, not all are. Educational styles and beliefs vary greatly. The main thing they have in common is this persistent belief that their children are theirs and not the state’s.

The right to homeschool in the U.S. has been upheld in the courts. I believe Pierce v. the Society of Sisters was one of the landmark SCOTUS cases. The HSLDA site would have more info.

INC on March 6, 2014 at 4:35 AM

A homeschooling missionary couple I know was working in Germany in the mid-nineties, and they had to put their kids into public school (conducted in English).

This is the Prussian model by the way. It may have been endorsed by the National Socialists, but we can thank Bismarck for it.

Akzed on March 5, 2014 at 12:12 PM

One thing that I find fascinating is the connection between compulsory schooling in this country and Germany. We’ve come full circle.

The Prussian model of education was brought to this country in the 1800′s by Americans who’d traveled in Europe.

Against School: John Taylor Gatto (Dumbing Us Down)

…The odd fact of a Prussian provenance for our schools pops up again and again once you know to look for it. William James alluded to it many times at the turn of the century. Orestes Brownson, the hero of Christopher Lasch’s 1991 book, The True and Only Heaven, was publicly denouncing the Prussianization of American schools back in the 1840s. Horace Mann’s “Seventh Annual Report” to the Massachusetts State Board of Education in 1843 is essentially a paean to the land of Frederick the Great and a call for its schooling to be brought here….

Gatto pulls these thoughts on the purpose of schooling as seen by Alexander Inglis [1879–1924] in his book, Principles of Secondary Education, written in 1919 :

Inglis, for whom a lecture in education at Harvard is named, makes it perfectly clear that compulsory schooling on this continent was intended to be just what it had been for Prussia in the 1820s: a fifth column into the burgeoning democratic movement that threatened to give the peasants and the proletarians a voice at the bargaining table. Modern, industrialized, compulsory schooling was to make a sort of surgical incision into the prospective unity of these under-classes. Divide children by subject, by age-grading, by constant rankings on tests, and by many other more subtle means, and it was unlikely that the ignorant mass of mankind, separated in childhood, would ever reintegrate into a dangerous whole.

Inglis breaks down the purpose – the actual purpose – of modem schooling into six basic functions, any one of which is enough to curl the hair of those innocent enough to believe the three traditional goals listed earlier:

1) The adjustive or adaptive function. Schools are to establish fixed habits of reaction to authority. This, of course, precludes critical judgment completely….

2) The integrating function. This might well be called “the conformity function,” because its intention is to make children as alike as possible….

3) The diagnostic and directive function. School is meant to determine each student’s proper social role….

4) The differentiating function. Once their social role has been “diagnosed,” children are to be sorted by role and trained only so far as their destination in the social machine merits – and not one step further…

5) The selective function. This refers not to human choice at all but to Darwin’s theory of natural selection as applied to what he called “the favored races.” …

6) The propaedeutic function. The societal system implied by these rules will require an elite group of caretakers. To that end, a small fraction of the kids will quietly be taught how to manage this continuing project, how to watch over and control a population deliberately dumbed down and declawed in order that government might proceed unchallenged and corporations might never want for obedient labor….

INC on March 6, 2014 at 4:51 AM

The history of the public school in the U.S. for almost two hundred years has been rooted in progressive, statist thinking transplanted from Prussia. Is it any wonder that the Obama administration wanted to deport this family?

INC on March 6, 2014 at 4:54 AM

Probably the foundational belief of homeschoolers is that parents are to be the ones directing the education of their children.

INC on March 6, 2014 at 4:27 AM

OK. I’ll take your word for it. :) But that’s wider. I wanted to point out that actual religious oppression is necessarily integral to the practice of banning it, and talk about why parents might want to be the ones directing it.

I don’t know of any extant argument, thinking about it, that argues that parents should be the directors of their kids’ educations on principle . . . which is strange.

Axe on March 6, 2014 at 7:11 AM

Axe on March 6, 2014 at 7:11 AM

I thought what you said was excellent. I went wider because it’s a common thought among homeschoolers, whether or not they are Christians.

That parents should direct their kids’ education is one of those truths that’s self-evident (to borrow a term!). What is education anyway? At root, it’s learning about yourself, about others, about the world and about all the interrelationships. Facts and analysis. Worldview and wisdom.

Someone’s going to be making the momentous decisions about what and from whom a little one should learn. Who should do so? The ones who gave him life. Mom and dad.

The idea of parents as stewards reflects Christian thinking. IMO the idea is common among homeschoolers in the U.S. because remnants of a Christian worldview are still present and because homeschoolers do a lot of thinking about what it means to be a parent!

Mom and dad may delegate the work of teaching to others, but parents are still making the decision about who is teaching their children. There’s a reason why local is frequently used as an adjective for school board. And woe be to that school board, principal, and teacher, when mom and dad have strong objections to what is going on in a classroom.

The “state” is not some intrinsic being with its own independent life. It’s a system of people and power, and throughout history I daresay it’s had far, far, far fewer, if any at all, altruistic motives regarding children than their parents. Those who want to hang on to power want to hang on to the next generation.

I’m no expert of the history of education throughout the world, but I guarantee that everywhere and at all times, someone has been making a decision about how little ones are to be reared. Education is an intrinsic part of their growth. I think natural law would indicate that parents are to direct it.

(You’re a smart guy, so assume all necessary caveats about hard cases, abuse, etc.).

INC on March 7, 2014 at 2:27 AM

From an old post of mine: Children: The Pawns of Utopia

Education is not only a necessary tool of utopians, but a very powerful one. There will always be adults to rebel against and refute their goals as harmful and wrong, but if they can ensure that children and young adults have learned to think according to their lights, then they are spared unnecessary exertion in conflict and rewarded with easy control. Adults are susceptible to propaganda, much less children who don’t have experience, criteria or wisdom by which to rationally judge the truth of what they are being taught. Education as propaganda is indoctrination.

INC on March 7, 2014 at 2:32 AM

Another old post Provincial Liberty & Education, isn’t about parent, but about local communities. However that presupposes parents making decisions on education. I lead off with Lincoln:

If it is true, as Abraham Lincoln said, that “The philosophy of the classroom today will be the philosophy of government tomorrow,” then it matters who is making decisions about what taught in the classroom.

I continue with a few words from Alexis de Tocqueville, use a killer quote from Orestes Brownson’s “In Opposition to Centralization,” pull in the Ninth and Tenth Amendment from the Bill of Rights, go back to de Tocqueville to drive home my point, and finish with:

Alexis de Tocqueville also wrote that mitigation against the tyranny of the majority was to be had because “The townships, municipal bodies, and counties form so many concealed breakwaters, which check or part the tide of popular determination.” Education is the bulwark of those breakwaters.

INC on March 7, 2014 at 3:29 AM

Context of, and killer quote:

As I mentioned way up in the thread, Americans traveling in Europe became enamored of the Prussian educational system, included Horace Mann, who wrote his “Seventh Report to the Boston School Committee” in 1843. During this time period Orestes Brownson of Chelsea, Massachusetts, was rebutting their arguments. The fight with progressives began almost 175 years ago.

A government system of education in Prussia is not inconsistent with the theory of Prussian society, for there all wisdom is supposed to be lodged in the government. But the thing is wholly inadmissible here . . . because, according to our theory, the people are supposed to be wiser than the government. Here, the people do not look to the government for light, for instruction, but the government looks to the people. The people give the law to the government. To entrust, then, the government with the power of determining the education which our children shall receive is entrusting our servant with the power to be our master. This fundamental difference between the two countries [United States and Prussia], we apprehend, has been overlooked by the board of education and its supporters.

Orestes Brownson, “In Opposition to Centralization” 1839

INC on March 7, 2014 at 3:36 AM